Century Aluminum of Kentucky announced Wednesday that it expects to continue to operate its Hawesville, Kentucky smelter at approximately 40% of capacity (two potlines) following October 24, 2015.
The plant had previously announced it would curtail all operations beginning Oct 24th. Read our coverage of that previous story here.
“We are pleased to be able to announce that partial operations will continue at Hawesville,” commented Michael Bless, President and CEO, in a statement released by the company. “Hawesville’s ability to produce high-purity aluminum enables the smelter to produce a unique product that will hopefully allow the plant to survive, albeit at significantly reduced production levels, in today’s market conditions.
“We regret the need to curtail any of Hawesville’s operations, which cannot compete against the improper export of unfairly-subsidized Chinese aluminum products. The continued expansion of Chinese aluminum capacity coupled with the significant increase in unfairly-subsidized Chinese aluminum exports has caused the collapse in industry pricing and put this excellent plant in jeopardy. These issues must be addressed immediately,” Bless said.
In connection with the announcement, Century Aluminum of Kentucky issued a new conditional federal Working Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN) notice to employees who will be impacted by continuing a two potline operation. The new WARN notice informs those employees that the remaining two potline operation is expected to be curtailed if certain high purity production levels are not achieved or if there is a material adverse change in commercial circumstances. The previous WARN notice issued on August 25, 2015 remains in effect for the remaining employees.
Read the full statement here.